Well, as you have probably guessed by now, I am in the Philippines. I made it safely, and the plane touched down about 11:00pm on Thursday night. I wasn’t able to get to bed until about 1:30, because I still had to go through customs, meet my contact, and travel to the place where I would be staying.
After a day traveling in Manila, on Saturday, I went to 2 different small, poor communities on the outskirts of the city. My contact/supervisor, Katie, wanted me to see these communities to have exposure to the real poverty that does exist here. While this was purely supposed to be a “cultural exposure trip,” to help introduce me to the country, I experienced my first spur-of-the-moment research opportunity! As I have already mentioned in earlier posts, I am here to research the success stories and impact of the Microenterprise Development program that Food for the Hungry operates.
As we are walking around, the community, the FH staff who worked in the community and who was also w/ Katie and I asked if I wanted to do an interview. Thankfully I had notebooks with me, and having not prepared a single interview question for the entire trip, I said ‘yes’! My mind went racing, and I began to remember the things that I had studied at Covenant.
Overall, I gained a lot of good information, even though it was only 1 interview in each community, and even though I was not at all prepared. Here is a picture of the first woman.
The second community that we went to was right by the large bay beside Manila. Here, bamboo houses and platforms were actually built over the water for more living spaces. Probably about 1/2 the community lived over the water. In both communities, children were definitely present. FH’s Child Development Program (CDP) takes a very holistic approach to working with the children and their families. While the children are themselves sponsored, the children’s families and communities are also impacted and empowered. But the most important thing is that the local church is empowered to reach out to its own community. FH always partners with the local church.
Here are a couple more pictures from these two communities. One is from the 1st community, and the other is from the second.
Don’t expect for my blog to be updated this regularly. I plan on moving in less than 1 week to Pila, for a 3-week span. There, I will be lucky to get internet even once / week.
Thanks so much for your continued prayers.